Caitlin Clark

Getty Caitlin Clark looks on against the New York Liberty during a June 2, 2024 WNBA game.

WNBA rookie sensation Caitlin Clark did not make the 12-person Team USA women’s basketball roster for the 2024 Paris Olympics. 

Yet, the WNBA announced on March 20 that before Team USA departs for Paris, they will play Team WNBA during the league’s All-Star Weekend on July 20 in Phoenix, Arizona.

“The [July 20] game gives the national team a proper chance to compete prior to the Olympics,” Emily Dozier of Sporting News wrote on May 14. 

Therefore, if Clark was to play for Team WNBA during that game, she’d get a chance to prove herself against the players who made the Olympics roster over her. 

July 20 will mark the second time Team USA will play Team WNBA. Before the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, Team WNBA beat Team USA 93-85 on July 14

In order to play against Team USA, Clark would need to qualify for the Team WNBA roster, which is essentially an All-Star team. But because many of the WNBA’s best players will be competing for Team USA in the game, that creates an excellent opportunity for Clark to make the Team WNBA roster. 

Diana Taurasi Addresses Caitlin Clark Not Making Team USA

WNBA legend Diana Taurasi made her opinion about Caitlin Clark’s 2024 Paris Olympics omission known in a June 10 USA Today article

“The game of basketball is all about evolving,” Taurasi said of Clark. “It’s all about getting comfortable with your surroundings. College basketball is much different than the WNBA than it is overseas.

“Each one almost is like a different dance you have to learn,” Taurasi continued. “And once you learn the steps and the rhythm and you have a skill set that is superior to everyone else, everything else will fall into place.”

Taurasi, who turns 42 years old on June 11, has been critical of Clark in the past.

Taurasi made waves about critical comments she made regarding Clark on April 6. 

“Look, SVP, reality is coming,” Taurasi told SportsCenter’s Scott Van Pelt about Clark. “There’s levels to this thing. And that’s just life. We all went through it. You see it on the NBA side, and you’re going to see it on this side. You look superhuman playing against 18-year-olds, but you’re going to [be playing against] some grown women that have been playing professional basketball for a long time.”

“Not saying [Clark’s skills] are not gonna translate,” Taurasi added. “Because when you’re great at what you do, you’re just gonna get better. But there is gonna be a transition period where you’re gonna have to give yourself some grace as a rookie.” 

Caitlin Clark’s Reaction to Not Making Team USA

Caitlin Clark kept it classy when asked about her reaction to not making the Team USA 2024 Olympics roster.

“I’m excited for the girls that are on the team,” Clark said on June 9, per an X video from Chloe Peterson of the Indy Star. “I know it’s the most competitive team in the world and I know it could have gone either way — me being on the team or me not being on the team. I’m going to be rooting them on to win gold. I was a kid that grew up watching the Olympics, so it will be fun to watch them.”

When asked whether she was disappointed about the decision, Clark said, “Honestly, no disappointment. It just gives me something to work for; it’s a dream. Hopefully one day I can be there.

“I think it’s just a little more motivation,” Clark added. “You remember that. Hopefully when four years comes back around, I can be there.”

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